- A total of 48 students from six technical-professional high schools in La Serena, Andacollo, and Ovalle presented their ideas for products, services, and/or process improvements based on renewable energy and electricity.
- The initiative is part of the Connections for Development program of ISA INTERCHILE in partnership with Fundación Chile and Red Futuro Técnico Coquimbo, which seeks to contribute to improving the quality and training of future technicians in the Energy sector.
La Serena, October 20, 2022 – A project to recover graywater in sinks in schools and institutions, a mini desalination plant that operates on solar energy, and a heating system based on green hydrogen are some of the innovative and sustainable ideas created by students from technical-professional high schools in La Serena, Andacollo, and Ovalle, who participated in the i+E Conexiones competition, promoted by the electricity transmission company ISA INTERCHILE, Fundación Chile, and Red Futuro Técnico Coquimbo.
The initiative is part of the Conexiones para el Desarrollo program, implemented jointly by organizations aiming to develop innovation and entrepreneurship skills in the technical and vocational education sector, and to create awareness about the need for a sustainable energy system for the country.
Alejandra Hidalgo, Head of Human Capital at the Ministry of Energy, emphasized that “instances like these are essential to promote the leading role that regions and their territories must have in shaping human talent with competencies and skills that contribute to sustainable development and address the country’s challenges.”
Álvaro González, Manager of Institutional Relations at ISA INTERCHILE, praised the development of the competition, stating that “the i+E Conexiones Competition and its great appeal to young talent provided technical and vocational high school students in the Coquimbo Region the opportunity to make their creative ideas a reality and, above all, to believe in their ability to transform their communities with sustainable energy solutions.”
For Manuel Farías, Director of Technical Education and Labor Training Trajectories at Fundación Chile, “this competition reflects the interest of students from technical and vocational high schools in the Coquimbo Region in contributing to their community with innovative and sustainable solutions, and reinforces the importance of generating new and better development opportunities for young people and encouraging them to become agents of change in their territories. This experience shows Fundación Chile’s interest in working collaboratively on projects that stimulate the creativity of young people in Chile.”
The competition distributed more than 20 million pesos among the winning projects and their respective high schools, as well as incentives such as technological devices for all participating students and teachers.
In total, 48 students from six local high schools, divided into two groups of 3 to 5 members per educational institution and accompanied by tutor teachers, presented their projects during the Technological Fair held on Wednesday at the Colegio San Martín de Porres. Each project had to comply with the requirement of being linked to renewable natural resources (sun, water, wind, biomass, etc.) applied to their generation, transmission, accumulation, and/or distribution, which would reduce losses, increase energy efficiency, and mitigate impacts.
The jury responsible for evaluating the ideas of products, services, and/or process improvements related to renewable electricity was composed of Cecilia Ramírez, Regional Secretary of Education of Coquimbo; María Castillo, Regional Secretary of Energy of Coquimbo; Alejandra Hidalgo, Head of Human Capital at the Ministry of Energy; Héctor Ponce, CIDERE Youth Sustainability Table; Santiago Echeverri, Leader of the Conexiones para el Desarrollo program of ISA; Ana María Correa, Head of Strategy at ISA INTERCHILE; and Manuel Farías, Director of Technical Education and Labor Training Trajectories at Fundación Chile.
María Castillo, Regional Secretary of Energy of Coquimbo, declared that “we are very happy with this activity aimed at students to highlight their skills and knowledge in electric energy, in a region that is a pioneer in renewable energies. We congratulate the organizers and the students and teachers who participated in this initiative.”
Cecilia Ramírez, Seremi (Regional Secretary) of Education in Coquimbo, detailed that “the first mandate that President Gabriel Boric has entrusted us as a Ministry is educational justice, which is to train the future citizens of the country in an equitable manner. This implies that, along with strengthening the productive field, we manage to enhance technical-vocational education so that it becomes part of the students’ life projects and not just part of their educational trajectories.”
Meanwhile, Santiago Echeverri, Leader of the Connections for Development program at ISA, who was also part of the jury, emphasized that “the Connections for Development program was born in Colombia as a way to fulfill dreams and today, we are fulfilling dreams. With this contest, we invite you to dream, to take ownership of innovation, and to think about a different future with valuable ideas that have potential.”
In the meantime, Felipe Moreno, director of Colegio San Martin de Porres, which hosted the final round of the contest, highlighted that “these instances seek to impact the life projects of our students through technical-professional training and learning experiences.”
The EMTP (technical-professional high school education) establishments in the Coquimbo Region that were part of the i+E Conexiones contest, represented by their students and tutor teachers, were the Liceo Politécnico de Ovalle, Liceo Bicentenario Ignacio Carrera Pinto, Colegio San Martín De Porres, Liceo Agrícola De Ovalle Tadeo Perry Barnes, Liceo Técnico-Profesional de adultos Coresol de La Serena and Liceo Pedro Regalado Videla.
Winning projects of the “i+E Conexiones” contest:
|Technical-professional establishment||Winning project|
|Liceo Politécnico de Ovalle||Gray water recovery|
|Liceo Bicentenario Ignacio Carrera Pinto||Mini Solar Desalination Plant|
|Colegio San Martín de Porres||Smart House with Energy Efficiency|
|Liceo Agrícola de Ovalle Tadeo Perry Barnes||HydrHome|
|Liceo TP de Adultos Coresol La Serena||Off-grid Photovoltaic Electrical System|
|Liceo Pedro Regalado Videla||Solar Bit Community|